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PRESS RELEASE June 30, 2020

World Bank Appoints New Country Director for Brunei, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand

MANILA, July 1, 2020 – The World Bank has announced the appointment of Ndiamé Diop, a Senegalese national, as its new Country Director for Brunei Darussalam, Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand, effective July 1, 2020.

An economist, Mr. Diop will oversee the World Bank’s operations in the four countries and continue the institution’s policy dialogues with government counterparts, civil society, academia, private sector, and other partners.

The World Bank Group (WBG) program in Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand combines cutting-edge analytics, advisory services and lending operations to support the countries’ development agendas. The World Bank team generates knowledge and provides evidence-based advice to support key reforms and share development and policy innovations with other developing countries.

“I’m very excited to take this role of Country Director for Brunei, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand,” said Diop. “These are among the most dynamic economies in East Asia with a strong track record of economic reforms and achievements. The economic security of the middle class and the progress in poverty reduction are, however, being seriously threatened by the COVID-19 pandemic. I look forward to meeting our partners in government, civil society, the private sector, and development agencies to learn how the Bank can help cushion health, economic and social impacts of the pandemic and set the stage for a lasting recovery."

The World Bank Group runs the WBG Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Finance Hub in Malaysia, partnering with the country in developing and implementing global development solutions. The Hub draws on global knowledge to share policy solutions to further unlock Malaysia’s potential and shares the country’s development experience with the rest of the world. It also supports innovative research in partnership with diverse domestic partners.

The WBG’s work in the Philippines spans more than seven decades, providing longstanding support for infrastructure as well as engagement in key sectors, including agriculture, social protection, water resources, disaster risk management. The WBG also supports the government’s key economic policy and governance reforms, helps spur private sector growth and promotes peace and development in the Southern Philippines.

In Thailand, the WBG supports transformation towards greater inclusion, resilience and competitiveness. Its work focuses on promoting competition and innovation by helping Thailand improve its business environment, economic institutions and infrastructure. The Bank also supports quality education and targeted programs for inclusion of disadvantaged and vulnerable groups, including in the fragile and conflict-affected areas of Southern Thailand.

In Brunei, the program has included support for improving business regulations or Ease of Doing Business. The WBG remains ready to engage and support the government in addressing its key development challenges.

Mr. Diop brings to this new position twenty years of World Bank experience, working across East Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa.

Prior to this appointment, he was Practice Manager for Macroeconomics, Trade and Investment for East Asia and the Pacific, providing technical and strategic guidance to the economic team working in Southeast Asia and the Pacific.

Mr. Diop was also Lead Economist for Indonesia, leading the economic policy dialogue and the Bank’s advisory and development policy lending support for the country. Earlier in his career, he worked as Lead Economist for Jordan and Lebanon and World Bank Resident Representative for Tunisia.

Mr. Diop joined the World Bank in 2000 as a Young Professional following the completion of his PhD in Economics the same year.



David Llorito